Saturday, 16 April 2011

Piglet’s Big Movie

During Disney’s early-2000s slump, it may be easily forgotten that Piglet’s Big Movie got released in cinemas, unlike most of the studio’s adaptations of their lucrative Pooh franchise.

I saw it on July 20, 2003, and was unimpressed: ‘Went to see Piglet’s Big Movie. I didn’t think it would be so bad, especially as The Tigger Movie managed to capture Milne’s style, had wonderful music and showed how dear the originals were to the team (particularly in the splendid end sequence). But sadly, this latest offering is disgraceful - in particular, the poor, poor story, shackling together bastardised versions of some Milne excerpts, surgically removing all the most charming parts (Rabbit’s plan, for instance), mixing in unlistenable, whiny, tuneless songs by Carly Simon, and even appending a terrifying credit sequence of her gurning and looking decidedly washed-up. We went home laughing about how sub-par it was, sad to say.’

This was the problem with the Disney of the period – when Pixar were going from strength to strength, it should be noted. You didn’t know what you were going to get, or when they would decide a film was a mistake and more or less bury all traces of it. DisneyToon was established just to churn out poor direct-to-video cash-ins, sometimes getting big-screen releases. Winnie the Pooh would seem a safe property, but as this film makes clear, it is also easy to make a mess of.

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